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Alibaba Branches Out Into Mobile Gaming with $145 Million Investment

Alibaba Founder and Executive Chairman, Jack Ma, on Jan. 19, 2017 in Davos.Fabrice Coffrini—AFP/Getty Images

Chinese technology giant Alibaba (BABA) is investing 1 billion yuan ($145 million) in mobile gaming distribution, a new area for chairman Jack Ma‘s expanding digital empire.

The Hangzhou-based company will be using the funds to work with mobile gaming firms to take games developed in China to an international audience, CNBC reports.

Bridging the gap between China and the rest of the world could be a challenge even for Alibaba, according to CNBC, as it will have to navigate government regulations restricting media and information as well as the cultural and linguistic gap between users.

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Alibaba is also vying to enter into developing markets such India and Indonesia. Making common cause with Alibaba are gaming firms Mail.Ru Group, TFJoy, Efun and ONEMT, according to CNBC.

China is the world’s largest online gaming market, with a gaming industry due to hit $12 billion by 2020, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers.